FSpaceRPG article

Status: Official

Later today you’ll see a list of work for this week, along with the point I’m at with iPhone apps/ebook apps. We’re at about 65 right now.

I can confirm I have about 30 more titles in the FSpace/FED/Tayana catalog that probably are suitable candidates for conversion to print reproduction ebook app versions. A number of them are just different versions of the same books, but I do price them differently.

This means in a short space of time I should be able to hit 100 titles available in the iTunes AppStore - say in the next 1-2 months (maybe shorter if I throw myself at it).

While this sounds like a large number, I don’t expect the RPG books to be as big an earner as utility applications with wide appeal. Once we strike 100 apps we’ll have about 30% of that as utility apps.

For financial return I’m not sure what the revenue will be like, but I’m hoping it will help improve earnings, not just keep them at a constant - aka the new release and saturation effect.

A slowdown in sales of some apps has begun to creep in by the looks of it, and hitting my US$200 mark for February in the AppStore is going to be a bit of a mission.

But I’ll forge ahead. Single sales of a large book like the Reference Manual does wonders to keep things buoyant, much like the small volume of Concise Rulebooks on OBS contributes significantly to revenue compared to lower revenue items.

I think the RPG books will do better on the iPad with the larger screen. And having a decent catalog ready to go will help.

Of course the problem is that internal hyperlinks of PDF reproductions aren’t supported directly by the render engines. Only one third party reader app seems to have solved this, using an Objective-C index system to read inside the PDF for the TOC hyperlinks, and provide navigation to the right page points. Something for me to consider implementing for my engine using a HUD style interface.

So big books are terrible to navigate right now.

The XHTML formatted books are far better. While I have a simple navigation system on them for small screens, I think on the iPad I can really go to town with that engine.

Who knows. I’ll keep plodding along.

Categories: Development

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